Publication Date: Mar 2021
RRP: $34.95
ISBN: 9781922464033
Format: Paperback
Size: 153mm x 234mm
Pages: 240
Category: Monash Asia, Military

The Emperor’s Grace

Untold Stories of the Australians Enslaved in Japan during World War II

Mark Baker

‘Mark Baker has written a compelling story of the hardship the men endured and of the mateship that helped them survive, all set against the backdrop of the unspeakable brutality of their Japanese captors.’ Peter Masters, Military Books Australia

The Emperor’s Grace is the story of the men of C Force – the first contingent of Australian, British and Dutch prisoners of war shipped from Singapore to Japan in November 1942. These men worked in the Kawasaki Shipyard in Kobe before the American firebombing campaign razed the city, and then the infamous Fukuoka coal mine before the atomic bombings of Hiroshima and Nagasaki brought World War II to an end.

When the Japanese seized most of South-East Asia in early 1942, they captured 22,000 Australian military personnel. More than a third would die over the next three years from malnutrition, disease and violent abuse. The horrors of the Thai–Burma Railway and Sandakan are well documented. Less well known is the fate of the 3800 Australians sent to work as slave labourers in the factories and mines of mainland Japan.

The Emperor’s Grace is a compelling story of hardship, heroism and endurance – and the ultimate triumph of the human spirit – told for the first time from the unpublished diaries, memoirs and personal accounts of the men who survived.


Mark Baker

Mark Baker is one of Australia’s most experienced journalists. He is a former Senior Editor of The Age, Editor of The Canberra Times and Managing Editor (National) of Fairfax Media. During 13 years as a foreign correspondent for Fairfax, News Corp and The Financial...
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